Compliance & Risk Management

12 tips for contemporary risk managers in law firms

[Australasian Law Management Journal,Compliance & Risk Management,General Management,Strategy & Leadership,Uncategorized] May 16, 2019

The role of law firm risk managers is changing significantly. Here are some pointers from Peppy Mitchell on what modern in-house law firm risk managers should be doing in an increasingly volatile world. Law firms are increasingly hiring dedicated risk managers with a diverse skillset. In the rapidly changing world of legal services, firms and […]

Applying the John West test – how to prevent disasters with fishy clients

[Australasian Law Management Journal,Compliance & Risk Management,Finance & Accounting,General Management,Strategy & Leadership] March 27, 2019

Sometimes the most valuable decision you can make when running a law firm is to not take on a client, so putting in place robust processes to determine which clients you accept or reject can save firms many future problems, writes Peppy Mitchell. How many times have you been in a difficult situation with a […]

Latest news – Billable hour dominates invoicing; Leadership skills in demand; Diversity strategies don’t always deliver

[Australasian Law Management Journal,Compliance & Risk Management,Finance & Accounting,General Management,People Management(HR),Strategy & Leadership] March 4, 2019

Billable hour still rules at mid-market firms A new survey from Pitcher Partner reveals that, despite a shift towards alternative fee structures, the billable hour still dominates for certain law firms. The survey of 140 mid-market sized firms found that hourly rates make up 58 per cent of invoices, with fixed rates comprising 29 per […]

Complaints can be branding opportunities – here are 10 tips to embrace them

[Australasian Law Management Journal,Compliance & Risk Management,General Management,Strategy & Leadership] December 13, 2018

Rather than treating client complaints as an assault on their professionalism and a chance to fire back with tit-for-tat disparagement, smart lawyers take the opportunity to engage with their clients and make every effort to win back their trust, writes Peppy Mitchell. Client-focused lawyers listen out for complaints and regard them as valuable opportunities to […]

The next big thing in procurement? Reverse online legal auctions

[Australasian Law Management Journal,Compliance & Risk Management,Finance & Accounting,General Management,Strategy & Leadership] September 15, 2018

As organisations put increasing pressure on law firms to offer the best possible price for their services, expect auctions to become commonplace whereby firms have to bid for a chance to get their work, writes Trish Carroll. When talk of alternative fee arrangements turned to reverse online auctions, the 100 people attending the APAC Legal […]

Q&A: Mike Johnstone – “The scammers use all sorts of tricks to take advantage of the good nature of people.”

[Australasian Law Management Journal,Compliance & Risk Management,General Management,Technology] September 5, 2018

In this Q&A, Edith Cowan University cybersecurity expert Associate Professor Mike Johnstone discusses the latest security threats law firms must combat; how to overcome password vulnerabilities; and why employing cybersecurity experts is not needed at most firms. In your research with colleagues at Edith Cowan University’s Security Research Institute, a survey of lawyers (see results […]

‘Hungry fish’ a recipe for success as firms chase operational agility

[Australasian Law Management Journal,Compliance & Risk Management,General Management,Strategy & Leadership] July 28, 2018

Law firms must embrace agility and new technology platforms as part of a response to digital disruption while continuing to place a premium on their professional integrity, writes Penelope Mitchell. The legal profession is facing rapid change, with clients expecting more for less and readily spreading or shifting their business. Every week we read of […]

Humour at work – managing the risks without being a killjoy

[Australasian Law Management Journal,Compliance & Risk Management,General Management,People Management(HR)] July 16, 2018

It comes in many forms and can be a valuable way to break down barriers and lift the spirit of teams, but a true understanding of humour and how it can affect people within a law firm is essential, writes Ronwyn North. What is your approach to humour at work? Does your law practice have […]

A word of warning on lawyers’ poor communication

[Australasian Law Management Journal,Compliance & Risk Management,General Management,Marketing & Business Development,Strategy & Leadership] July 2, 2018

The general deterioration of writing standards in society is also an issue in the legal sector, and this deficiency has the potential to cost firms money and clients, writes Trish Carroll. Lawyers trade in words. Yet despite that, clients consistently complain about their poor communication. The 2016/17 Annual Report of The Office of the Legal […]

The who, what and how of workplace investigations

[Australasian Law Management Journal,Compliance & Risk Management,General Management,Strategy & Leadership] March 31, 2018

Firms must create a culture in which workplace grievances are rare while also having the capacity to act quickly and decisively if complaints and allegations from staff members are forthcoming, writes Leonie Green. It is almost impossible to read newspapers or online stories at the moment without coming across the details or fallout of various […]